The story could had been so much different if Real Madrid had some more quality in their statring lineup. Real Madrid had great chances in the first half and one in the second half. Though Real Madrid were on the back foot for most of the 90 minutes, we had the better chances. Barcelona could not break down the white house as easily as they would have liked.
In the end, Eto’o scored a pathetic goal on the 83rd minute mark, from his thighs and that too was almost cleared off the line by Parejo. The Second goal was even more feeble in nature. This time Barcelona hit Real Madrid on the break. Henry released Messi in the 90th minute and he got in a one on one situation with Casillas (who was at his absolute best in this match) and chipped it over Casillas’s head.
Cannavaro was back tracking and could had easily cleared it as it was a chip, the ball had no pace on it but wait, Cannavaro is 35. I completely forgot that. Messi celebrated as if he had scored the goal of the century (actually he did that 2 seasons ago againt Getafe in Copa Del Ray) while in reality, it was a stupid goal.
Barcelona undoubtedly dominated the game. The match started at a very fast pace and ended at a very fast pace. There were tackles, slides, fouls, cards, abuses. Everything but in the midst of all that, it was Real Madrid who had the most clear cut of chances.
Barcelona did have the ball posession but Real Madrid defended extremely well. Barcelona didn’t have any clear cut chances throughout the game.
Though Barcelona won, the headlines worldwide praised Real Madrid’s performance and we did show some real character in this game. Despite loosing almost ALL our key players and playing under a new coach at the Camp Nou, Real Madrid did not let their fans down and stood up to the challenge and prooved a lot of people wrong who predicted a thrashing of Real Madrid by the hands of Barcelona.
Well, infact, it was Barcelona who got lucky in this game as Real Madrid missed some sitters.
The big surprise in the start of the game was that Sergio Ramos was playing as left back due to some injuries to other players and Sniejder started the game, though initially he was expected not even in the squad list, let alone a starter. Real Madrid also used some of their reserved team player, of which only Palancka was used.
Whereas, Barcelona had a fully fit squad, almost fully fit. I think only Iniesta was absent and Bojan could had played instead of Gubjhonson, Bojan is as good as iniesta, if not better (atleast against Real Madrid) because of his directness and pace with the ball.
Barcelona started with 4-3-3, with Messi, Eto’o and Henry upfront and Xavi, Gudjhonson, Yaya Toure in the midle. Daniel Alves, Puyol, Marquez and Abidal made the back line.
As expected, it was a high intensity game from the start as Barcelona looked the more dominant side. Messi was a constant threat down the wing, Sergio Ramos didn’t look all that comfortable with him but then again, who’s the one who feels good about marking Messi in a match. Messiisthe man who absolutely ripped Roberto Carlos apart 2 seasons ago when Fabio Capello was incharge of Real Madrid. Real Madrid won that match though.
Real Madrid applied clever tactics, as they should I think. I think after Capello and before him after Del Bosque. All our coaches were very weak tactically, relied on touch football rather than change style of play during the games, according to the situation, something which Jose Mourinho is a master at.
Real Madrid players took turns to foul Messi and that is not unfair by any means. It is a physical sport and one should be able to compete physically as well as technically. Messi complained too much and got down too easily. Someone should tell him that all these past years when Messi was improving his touch and control, other players were working their butts off in the gym to get stronger so that they could compete with players like Vieira and Gattuso.
Anyway, Cannavaro and Casillas were the heroes of the first half, as both made crucial saves in the early minutes to deny Barcelona the lead. Messi, when he wasn’t kicked out of the game, did manage to threat the goal of Real Madrid but could not beat Casillas.
Real Madrid were playing with counter attack mindset and did threat Barcelona’s goal. At the 23rd minute mark Sniejder did make a fine volley and forced Valdes to tip the ball over the net.
Less than a minute later though and Real Madrid should have taken the lead when Raúl played Royston Drenthe through behind the defence, only fortheDrenthetoshoottamelywhenone-one-one,